By James F. Miller
The Christian life is a struggle. It’s not so much a struggle against the physical world but rather against principalities and powers of a spiritual nature. Somewhere along the line people got the idea that being a Christian was a life of ease but nothing could be farther from the truth. The Bible is filled with examples that contradict this popular idea and a close look at the scriptures will make the point clear.
In Paul’s letter to the Ephesians in the sixth chapter he tells the Ephesians to put on the whole armor of God that they may stand against the wiles of the devil. Paul goes on to explain what they were going to fight against and then again he tells them in verse 13 to take up the whole armor of God, that they may be able to withstand in the evil day and having done all to stand. Paul’s description here clearly shows that the Christian’s life is not going to be one of ease. In the following verses he goes on to teach that we have the tools with which to fight. We have truth, righteousness, the gospel, faith, salvation, and above all the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God. This being said we can now get to the point of this lesson.
Time after time I have heard brothers and sisters in Christ say that they don’t want to keep hearing about this denomination or that and what this one teaches or what that one teaches. Some may even say, “What do I care what’s being taught by others? I have the gospel so I’m safe.” Others say, “Well, it’s not my job, that’s what the preacher is for.” Brethren, we need to remember Luke 9:62. But Jesus said to him, “No one having put his hand to the plow and looking back is fit for the kingdom of God. If we are going to take our marching orders in Mark 16:15,16 seriously we must be willing to take a stand for God’s word.
With the attitude that I have seen on the part of most Christians, it’s no wonder that the church isn’t growing. Until each one of us comes to the conclusion that it is not only the preachers’ responsibility to see that the gospel is spread throughout our community, the church isn’t going to grow. Look around you. Those who would teach false doctrine are going from house to house. What are we doing? Peter knew the danger of such false teachers and warned us about them (2 Pet. 2).
Brothers and sisters, it’s time we put on the whole armor of God and return to the battle. Let us give up our excuses “I’m too busy,” “No one listens,” “I’m too old” etc. Let our cry be, “If God is with us, who can stand against us?” I implore each one who reads this to stop and ask himself, where would I be if someone hadn’t shown me the gospel? Then take time to thank God that that person was willing to teach you; then you go give the good news that Christ gave his life for us to someone else.
Guardian of Truth XXXVIII: 7, p. 4
April 7, 1994